FDA hits back at chemists threatening to surrender licenses

Jun 14, 2013, 21:48 IST | Mahalakshmi Subramanian

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has hit back at retail and wholesale pharmacists and chemists across Maharashtra threatening to surrender their licences on July 15.

FDA commissioner, Mahesh Zagade, on Friday responded to the threat issued by retail and wholesale pharmacists and chemists across Maharashtra by stating that they hadn’t received any written representation of the claims from the All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists Associations (AIOCDA). He, though, warned that if such an incident did occur, the licenses surrendered would be accepted.

“We will accept the surrendered licenses. Also, we will declare that in the future these chemists, whether wholesalers or retailers, cannot be trusted in supplying medicines as they withdrew from this duty themselves,” he said.

The commissioner claimed that 70 per cent of medical shops in Maharashtra are owned by pharmacists who run their business legally. Another 10-15 per cent includes owners who employ a pharmacist.
It’s only the remaining 15-20 per cent, which was indulging in illegal practices like not employing a qualified pharmacist, which are inciting the others, he claimed. He requested the shop owners to not give in to such demands since it was anti-social and disruptive to public health.

“Through the media, I want to request pharmacists running the business legally to not extend support to this.” Zagade

Issuing a warning to the agitating chemists and pharmaceutical firms, the FDA Commissioner said that those found to have stopped the supply of drugs would have their license cancelled according to the Essential Commodities Act, 1955. Till now FIR has been filed against companies including Galderma, FDC india, Unikem drugs, Mankind, Medley and Glenmark pharmaceuticals for refusing to supply drugs directly to retailers and wholesalers.

He though claimed that he most shop owners would not surrender their licenses as they adhered to laws and didn’t want to do anything that would affect their business.

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